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Discussion Starter #1
Hi everyone. Brand new ranger rover owner as of two days ago.

It’s a 1997 4.0 petrol.

Bought it quite a distance away and drove it back home on motorway roughly 160miles with absolutely no problems. Was quick no noises, great acceleration etc.

As of today it starts up absolutely fine every single time but the problem I’m having is it will constantly stall/cut out at junctions. Iv watched the Rev needle struggle as I put it in to first or neautral slowing down to a halt and suddenly it cuts out. And it’s happwning every single time without fail now. Drove it a fair distance on motorway close to home too hoping to give it a good run but still is doing it.

It’s also acting extremely underpowered/sluggish revving up through the gears. To the point I pulled out of a junction on a roundabout and a lorry was right up behind me as I had my foot completely to the floor in second watching it struggle to get up to speed.

But again, it starts every single time it cuts out with no issue.

There’s no signs of mayo or smell from oil cap, plenty of oil in, plenty of coolant, no smoke from exhausts.

Panicking a little bit now 😓
 

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If it is still running on all cylinders, most likely a failing fuel pump so fuel pressure is low. On the RH side of the fuel rail (as you look at it from the drivers seat) there's a Schrader valve. Put a pressure gauge on that (tyre gauge will do the job) and check the pressure, it should be between 34 and 37 psi.
 

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Fuel pump is a strong possibility.

If it is a GEMS engine I would clean the IACV and the butterfly valve on the intake. Try not to disturb the position of the pintle as it has been reported that this can create problems when re-installed.

On my 4.0 GEMS engine I needed to replace it. If you are in the U.S. Napa carries a suitable replacement. (PART # :CRB 21856). When I installled the new IACV I attempted to match the pintle position of the unit I had removed from the car and I had no problems whatsoever.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Thanks for your replies guys. What is this button and what does it do specifically? Because the car drove absolutely beautifully when I bought it two days ago but I hadn’t pressed anything. Yesterday I pressed all sorts of buttons including that one to find out what they did. Ever since iv had this stalling problem.

Iv pressed it again and a light went off?
 

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That's a changeover switch for a Tartarini LPG conversion. If the light on the right, the picture of a petrol pump is on, you are running on petrol, if the light on the left, and any of the row along the bottom, are on or flashing it is either running on LPG or trying to change over. Sounds like you are switching it to LPG but the tank is empty.
 

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Can't tell from the switch what sort of system you have, it might be an early Tec99, a rebadged AEB 175 system or a later multipoint system. However, a multipoint will slave of the petrol system and will either work or it won't but a Tec99 or AEB 175 will try to run on LPG even if the tank is empty as it has no way of knowing. Even if the tank isn't empty, if there is a problem with something, a sticking actuator or a dead or disconnected lambda sensor, it will still try to run on LPG but the mixture will be very weak. That will make it extremely gutless and probably try to stall too. That's how you know a Tec99 or similar singlepoint system is running out of gas, it goes all sick and flat until you press the button to switch back to petrol. Do you have two blocks of LPG injectors, one either side of the engine, or a single hose running to an adapter on the throttle body? A picture of the underbonnet will allow what you have to be identified. Where in the world are you?
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Sorry for late replies all. Been away and working quite a lot.

But yeah it was that lpg button causing the loss in power and stalling. I’ve tested it, the second I press it the car feels sluggish and the Rev needle goes below 1k revs when ever I stop at a junction until it stalls completely.

The second I press the button again to switch to petrol it never ever stalls or feels sluggish.

My problem now is, when I press the lpg button it shows 2-3 bars? It showed 2 green bars when I first started the car and now 3 when iv pulled up. I’m assuming that’s how much is in the lpg tank? And if that’s the case then surely it’s wrong with it stalling and feeling sluggish?

Also took a pic of where I believe I have to put lpg in. Never owned an lpg convert before so having to do a lot of googling. But I found this under rear of car next to tow bar.


(First pic shows it having three bars)
(Second pic is where I think I fill it)
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Just watched a YouTube video of a similar looking button and it says amber light means it’s transitioning? And for it to use lpg properly it turns green? So maybe there isn’t any lpg in it because it always stays Amber
 

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You'll probably do best on a dedicated LPG forum rather than here, try registering on www.lpgforum.co.uk and post those pictures. The filler doesn't look like it has been used for some time so the LEDS may be lying. Gauges are notoriously inaccurate, my first LPG car showed 3/4 full no matter whether it was full, empty or anywhere in between. The Filler should have a cap on it to stop it filling with road dirt which then gets blasted into the tank when you fill up. Try putting some gas in it, as you say, it may just be virtually empty although the fact that it runs, albeit badly, suggests there is gas but not enough is being fed to the engine. A photo of what you have under the bonnet will help to identify what you have installed too. Working properly, there should be no noticeable difference in performance between petrol and LPG, the biggest difference is in running costs. Running a V8 P38 with a fuel cost equivalent of 30mpg makes lots of sense, I try to never run on petrol.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Thanks for replying Richard.

I think I will pop a tenner in it and see what happens. Because naively I wasn’t fully prepared for the hunger of this 4.0 lol. £20 unleaded has taken me from empty to less than a quarter of tank.....my god.

Worst case scenario the lpg isn’t working correctly and I lose a tenner.

I’m just confused with how it still runs if the tank is empty though? Sluggish but runs. Stalling at junctions. It acts like a car running on petrol fumes.
 

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It may well be running on fumes. What is odd is that the switch is showing it at the point of changing over rather than actually having changed and cut the petrol injectors off. If it is in the changeover phase, it should be supplying both fuels before cutting the petrol off. Or, it is a multipoint system and it is waiting to get up to temperature but if that was the case, it shouldn't affect the running until it actually changes over.

Yeah, about 18 mpg on petrol on a good day with a following wind and driving like a granny. The nice thing about a singlepoint LPG system is that it will start on petrol but then change over immediately rather than having to warm up on petrol so I use about £20 of petrol every 4-6 months.
 

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An LPG system runs on the liquid Propane and there is a vaporiser/reducer that changes it to vapour and regulates the pressure. If the tank is very empty, only vapour is getting that far so there is insufficient for it to run properly, so it will seem like it is running on fumes because it is. I assume you are in the UK, whereabouts? With the cost of petrol in the UK, running on LPG makes sense unless you are only doing very low mileage. I'm doing 20-25,000 miles a year in mine and I simply wouldn't be able to afford to run it on petrol but when a tank of gas, good for 200-220 miles, only costs around £35, it's cheaper to run than a shopping trolley.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Hiya Richard. Well today iv finally tested it. And I think there’s a problem with the lpg. First day off work so drove it to closest garage that does auto gas. Put £10 worth in. When I removed the nossel it seemed to leak out? White mist/gas was coming back out of where I filled it.

Pressed the button on dash to swap to lpg for my 8mile drive back home and the car still lacked power and struggled and stalled at junctions in lpg mode even though I’d just put £10 in.

Thought there was a leak or problem with my petrol side of things with how much it’s eating through it but I guess it’s just the fuel economy of the car? Isn’t it only around 15mpg on unleaded?
 

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There's two non return valves in the fill line, one at the tank and another in the filler. When you take the filler nozzle off you should get a blast of gas which is what is in the nozzle, that is normal. If it leaks out for a few seconds after filling that suggests the valve in the filler isn't sealing properly but that is probably down to the lack of a cap allowing road dirt to get in. Worst case it will need a replacement filler but they are cheap enough (https://tinleytech.co.uk/product-category/lpg-parts/filler-components/fillers/).

As I still don't know what system is fitted, I'm still assuming it is a single point as it is unlikely a multipoint would even try to run unless everything was correct. A single point consists of a tank, a vaporiser, a mixer, an actuator valve, a controller and an emulator. The controller does as it’s name suggests and, when switched to gas, will cause the changeover to happen. At this stage, it applies power to an output that goes to three solenoid valves, one on the tank, one on the input to the vaporiser (which incorporates a filter), one on the output of the vaporiser and the emulator and switches them all on. This allows liquid gas to flow into the vaporiser where it turns into a gas and the pressure is regulated. The gas then flows through the actuator valve and into the mixer. The mixer is a metal ring with holes around the inside edge that is fitted into the air intake of the car.

When running on gas, everything happens just the same as on petrol except the pulses from the ECU are intercepted and, instead of going to the petrol injectors, are sent to the emulator. The emulator is simply a box of relays and electronic components to simulate the injectors so the ECU doesn’t detect a problem with the injectors and bring on the check engine light. So, the engine is turning, the spark plugs are sparking but no petrol is being injected. Instead, the gas is drawn through the mixer by the airflow and into the engine so it can run on that instead. To control the amount of gas, the controller takes an input from the lambda sensor and uses that to adjust the actuator valve (or stepper as it is often called) to keep the mixture correct. However, on a GEMS engine, which you have, the lambda sensor is a Titania 5-0V sensor where 5V means very lean and 0V means very rich. So if the sensor (the LPG system will be connected to one of the two fitted in each exhaust downpipe) is dead, the LPG system will be seeing 0V so it thinks the engine is running very rich and makes the LPG mixture very lean. This would explain the lack of power and stalling. Equally, it could be that one of the solenoid valves is clogged and not allowing sufficient gas through although if that is the problem normally a car will idle perfectly but run lean when you open the throttle.

You would think that a dead lambda sensor would also affect running on petrol. It will but in a different way. Normally the output from the lambda sensor will switch between 5V and 0V so the average of the switching is what the petrol ECU uses to set the fuel mixture. If it detects that the sensor isn't switching, it tries to get the mixture correct to make it switch but when it doesn't, it concludes that the sensor has died and defaults to a fail safe fuelling strategy. As too lean a mixture can damage the engine, the fail safe is a rich mixture which could explain why you are only getting 15 mpg when normally you would expect to see something like 18-20 mpg. If you have an OBD reader that can show live readings, that will be able to show you what the lambda sensors are doing. Although the GEMS (pre-99 model) P38 is not fully OBD compliant, any generic code reader will connect to it and show most things.

Are you in the UK? If so where as I don't mind having a look at it for you if you are anywhere near me.


 

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Discussion Starter #16
Hi Richard.

It’s my own fault, iv bought a car I have no idea about. The closest iv ever had to this was a 05 plate freelander 1.8 petrol. And even that went kaboom on me after only three months. I just like big 4x4/suv type cars so went out and got one.

I mean it has plenty wrong with it anyone can see who knows little about cars but it’s small jobs here and there and cosmetic jobs. Such as wing mirror broken, speaker in door not working, few tiny rust patches here and there, driver seat ripped etc. But those are things I can fix or look at fixing month by month.

Obviously what I’m scared of is more sinister/serious mechanical faults. Such as the engine/fuel etc. Stuff I have no idea about. Just to give you an example of the poor petrol economy iv attached a couple of example pictures to show it. The first one is the distance to my place of work from home and the second one is an example of the level of fuel.

My fuel gauge was on empty with the light on dash, I put £10 worth of petrol in and it took the needle to where iv highlighted on the picture. So strait away I was shocked and thought my god! £10 only just takes it above empty?!! And then I went to work, on my way back from work the petrol light came back on....so I’d put £10 of fuel in to drive 11miles to work and got about 3 miles in to the journey home for it to need fuelling again!
 

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A tenner isn't going to move the fuel gauge much, it has a 100 litre tank! So with the average price of petrol being around £1.25 a litre (I think, I don't buy it that often), that's £125 for a full tank and £10 worth is less than 10% of a tankful. However, your map has shown something very useful. Other than doing it myself (and I'm about an hour down the A1 from you), there are only two LPG installers in the country I would trust. One is on Anglesey which is quite a distance for you, the other is in South Elmsall so you couldn't be better placed to get it sorted and running on half price fuel then you won't need to worry about the price of petrol. To give you an idea of cost, I get between 180 (running around town) and 220 (long journey) miles on a 67 litre fill of LPG. With LPG at anything between 55 and 69p per litre depending on where you buy it (see www.filllpg.co.uk for locations and prices of your local filling stations) that is costing me between £37 and £46 so quite a bit more palatable than what it is costing you to run. I'll PM you the details of the LPG installer.
 

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Discussion Starter #18
Ahhh cheers Richard.

Going to be asking how longs a piece of string here but....what’s the average cost of repair for parts of the lpg? Because obviously something isn’t working correctly.

With the gas leaking back out after I put some in. Then the power loss/struggle and stalling at every junction.

(Also hear a gas pressure sound when I switch from petrol to lpg like the sound you get when you’ve been putting air in your tyres and remove nossel)
 

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Whatever system you have you are likely to need a replacement filler which is around £30. If we assume a single point system, then worst case would be a replacement vaporiser at £80 as there's very little else that can go wrong. But think about it, that's only just over a weeks worth of petrol at the moment so the sooner it is back on LPG the better. If, as I suspect, you have a duff lambda sensor, then that will be about the same again. Although the car seems to be running OK, if a sensor has died it will give high emissions on petrol (as it is running rich) so you'd need it replacing to get it to pass an MoT anyway. But one thing to note is that if the LPG system can be manually set to run right with a duff sensor, then you can present it for MoT running on LPG and the standard is less strict.
 

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Thank you so much for answering all my questions Richard. Been a bit of a pain I know. What I’ll have to do is survive on petrol here and there till payday on the 26th. Then give the guy closest to me a call to check my lpg set up. Because I don’t want to get rid of it but also can’t keep up with the unleaded costs.
 
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